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    Old 07-17-2016, 10:26 PM   #1
    mkdandy
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    Could this be MS?

    Hi everyone, I'm a 40 year old mom of three young children and have been through a lot of anxiety this year about my health, worrying that I might not be able to take care of them well; I never really had such anxiety until this year. Starting around January, something felt off and I started waking up with numbness in my head on the right side. I also had some tingling/numb fingers and arm on my right side upon waking up but that went away after I got up for the day. I'd also feel very nauseous and weak in the morning but never threw up. I never thought much of it though, being busy with a one year old and her two older brothers. I also had a yearly check up and everything was "fine"..no diabetes or any other major issues at all, but fast forward to now, I still have not found any real answers yet from my GP regarding the numbness and tingling, and I'm having a myriad of eye issues (numerous floaters, severe dry and inflamed eyes, migraine aura - bead of light rolling on the peripheral vision mostly when I close my eyes, and now, mild ghosting/double vision, and general blurriness that comes and goes) in addition to unresolved numbness and tingling of my WHOLE body after waking up now. In addition, I also have a constant sore neck ache mostly on my right side as well. I am also experiencing pins and needles in my face and body from time to time now. I told my GP about this and she thinks it's how I sleep...but it's been 6 months and no resolution. She also had a CT scan ordered for me and it revealed that I had a sinus infection of my ethmoid cells but brain looks fine. So I'm thankful that I don't have a tumor or anything that may be terminal. I'm now still on antibiotics for a second round as it did not clear after the first round. My head and ears feel full but not as bad as before the antibiotics.

    I've also been to my optometrist several times and an ophthalmologist once and they both say the health of my eyes seem fine with the exception of the dry eyes. I saw my optometrist recently regarding the double vision and she said dry eyes can cause double vision, but it is still freaking me out as one of my biggest fear about health (besides something terminal) is going blind because I'm already extremely nearsighted (-10 lens). My vision lately just seems off (unfocused) and fluctuating, not as clear and horrible at night with a lot of "static" . I don't know if it is dry eyes or something more sinister like optic neuritis (or cataracts, glaucoma, or uveitis). Of course, when I look up eye problems related to double vision, optic neuritis came up, and it is often connected with MS. I still have slight pain behind my right eye and now I am beginning to feel it behind my left eye (but this also happened the same time that my ENT told me that my sinus infection probably has spread to my left side as well.)

    So, I'm wondering if anyone presented similar to this, with numbness on one side of the body and vision problems? I thought that my sinus infection was causing all this at first but my eye problems are just really driving my anxiety up the wall sometimes. My ENT said sinus problems can cause pressure behind the eyes but shouldn't really cause double vision (thought I read that in serious cases, most would involve the sphenoid sinus) I may post this in other boards as well as I am wondering if I have a "pinched nerve" or other condition.

    Thank you so much for reading this far and any insights or helpful comments. I really want to live more fully but have been very distracted with worries and this is somewhat affecting my time with my kids and family as my eye health just seems to be gradually deteriorating.

    Last edited by mkdandy; 07-17-2016 at 11:15 PM.

     
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    Old 07-18-2016, 06:29 AM   #2
    Snoopy61
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    Re: Could this be MS?

    Hi mkdandy,

    Quote:
    I don't know if it is dry eyes or something more sinister like optic neuritis (or cataracts, glaucoma, or uveitis). Of course, when I look up eye problems related to double vision, optic neuritis came up, and it is often connected with MS.
    If you had Cataracts, Optic Neuritis, Glaucoma or other serious eye conditions the Optometrists and Ophthalmologist you have seen would have been able to detect it during your eye exam.

    Your Drs. are correct, dry eyes can cause double vision. Do you use moisture drops?

    If there is no serious eye condition floaters are considered normal. Many people experience eye floaters and do not have any eye conditions.

    Migraine auras can and do cause visual disturbance. Sinus problems can affect vision and cause eye pain.

    Quote:
    I also had some tingling/numb fingers and arm on my right side upon waking up but that went away after I got up for the day
    MS is not positional. If you improve after you get up and moving it's not MS.

    There are numerous conditions, vitamin/mineral deficiencies, some medications and mental health issues that cause the same type of symptoms as MS and they can overlap one another. All of those other causes need to be ruled out as well as testing and neurological exam indicating MS as a possibility.

    There is a diagnostic Criteria for Multiple Sclerosis --- The revised McDonald Criteria. CT Scans are not used in the diagnostic criteria for MS, MRIs are.

    If you deal with anxiety then treatment for anxiety would be suggested. Anxiety can cause body wide physical symptoms. If your symptoms are anxiety related then once under control you should see an improvement of your symptoms.

    Quote:
    My head and ears feel full but not as bad as before the antibiotics.
    I am glad you are starting to feel better. MS would not cause the above and even if it was due to the disease process of MS antibiotics would not help.

    Take care.

     
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    Old 07-18-2016, 07:54 AM   #3
    heather4867
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    Re: Could this be MS?

    I have had vision problems similar to yours and suspected Optic Neuritis. After an eye scan, my optometrist diagnosed Map- Dot, Finger Print Corneal Dystrophy - which is a genetic condition characterized by dry eyes and, with some people, severe pain. It comes and goes but is not progressive. Certain types of eye drops are really helpful. I'm certainly not a medical person, but there are many things that could be causing your eye problems. Your eye Dr's. are the ones who would know, just as Snoopy said.

    Last edited by heather4867; 07-18-2016 at 07:54 AM.

     
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    Old 07-18-2016, 07:55 AM   #4
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    Re: Could this be MS?

    mkdandy,

    Welcome.

    Based upon what you have shared, it sounds highly unlikely that MS is a concern. Anxiety is, however, a concern. Uncontrolled, anxiety can mimic MS and cause symptoms to present that mimic MS or which can also debilitate.

    Sinus issues or aging issues can individually or in tandem affect your eyes. Dry eyes is entirely treatable. If you have Optic Neuritis (ON), this still would not confirm MS because while some MSers (20%) experience ON, the vast majority of people with ON never develop MS. If you ever have ON, your doctor will likely follow your case to make sure that your ON does not evolve or transition to MS.

    It would appear that you have seen the proper doctors.

    Anxiety is the sole remaining issue. Do not be afraid to ask for help with this. The longer it remains a variable, it will be harder to shed. Oral counseling, medication, or a balanced combination can be quite effective. Exercise is also helpful in lessening and eliminating anxiety.

    Thank you for sharing.
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    Old 07-23-2016, 11:05 PM   #5
    mkdandy
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    Re: Could this be MS?

    Thank you everyone that has responded. Since my posting, I've gone to see my GP again and she has referred me to see a neurologist. Unfortunately, the earliest I can see one is Sept 6th! I'm not sure I can/want to wait that long to see one and wondering if I can get my GP to allow me to get a brain/cervical MRI...or if I should just walk into an urgent care clinic that has MRI services. I have also scheduled a visit to another ophthalmologist, as I've felt the other one I saw earlier, kind of wrote me off and didn't really address my concerns. My vision is not getting any better and always "off", blurry and double vision with intermittent pain behind the eyes is something I don't want to let go of without treatment. I almost feel as if it is grainier, dimmer as well.

    I hope to find out soon what is ailing me but in the meantime, am seeing an ND who does acupuncture in a week as well as a chiropractor who specializes in upper cervical...

    Last edited by mkdandy; 07-23-2016 at 11:07 PM.

     
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    Old 07-23-2016, 11:40 PM   #6
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    Re: Could this be MS?

    Hi there. Waiting 30 days for a Neurologist is not uncommon; you could call them and ask to be put on a cancellation list, in case someone cancels, you could get in sooner.

    An urgent care with a MRI isnt the same type of MRi which is used for an MS screening. Urgent Cares have small MRI machines, used for gastric issues. A MRI for MS is not considered Urgent; as most people live with MS for many years and never know it. Your symptoms do not scream MS but really do point towards possible eye problems. Seeing a new Opthamologist is a great idea!

    Remember optometrists are not doctors. They simply are trained to use the machine to determine your vision needs as far as prescriptions, and they make glasses. You need to stick with medical eye doctors- Opthamologists.

    You might want to hold off on the chiropractor until you see the neurologist....manipulating the nerves of the body can sometimes cause more damage to areas which are inflammed. Chriopractors are not recommended for neurological disorders including MS. Accupuncture might help however, especially if you can work on some points of anxiety....it is clear that you are very anxious over what is going on (and rightly so!) but anxiety can also contribute to very real symptoms, getting those under control would be a good idea and if accupuncture helps you, then you should do it!

    Wishing you the best!
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    Old 07-24-2016, 06:41 AM   #7
    MSJayhawk
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    Re: Could this be MS?

    mkdandy,

    Your GP may be able to order tests in advance so that you can have the files in hand when you see the neurologist. If MS is a possibility, rather than a general neurologist, an MS Specialist would be better. There is a 3 - 6 month wait, but you might be able to get on a cancellation list.

    The ND, Chiropractor, and acupuncturist should all be avoided until you have a definitive diagnosis. Patience can wear thin. You should be able to see an Ophthalmologist with less wait time. The Ophthalmologist can also order an MRI if necessary.

    Try to avoid anxiety and if needed, ask for help in controlling your anxiety. MS is not fatal. Even if you were to see an MS Specialist tomorrow, they might ask that you get anxiety treated first because it can interfere with a proper diagnosis. An MRI alone will not allow for a diagnosis.
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    Old 07-24-2016, 03:42 PM   #8
    Okie gal
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    Re: Could this be MS?

    Hi mkdandy,

    I actually read through the entire posts made. Go me.

    Yes, your GP can order an MRI be done before meeting with a neurologist and it should be done with contrast as well. See if she/he will do this and make sure to get the scans on disk before leaving. Don't bother looking at them, even though I always do. I'm a rule breaker, so be it.

    Your vision issues could, as mentioned, definitely be due to dry eyes. I have many vision issues and not all are related to my MS, but some are. Optic gel drops can help with the blurred vision and I put drops in three times a day to help keep my vision clear. If it clears with the drops, then my eyes are dry. If it doesn't clear with the drops, then it's my MS acting up and I just deal with it.

    I'm hoping you find you don't have MS. It can be a long road to discover what is troubling you, or it could be quick. September is quite a ways out, so it can give you time to research the neurologist's educational background to see if they have good experience with autoimmune disorders/diseases.

    Keep us posted.

     
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    Old 07-25-2016, 02:00 PM   #9
    mkdandy
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    Re: Could this be MS?

    Hi all, thanks again for your responses (and Okie Gal for reading all of the post in one shot!) My GP said it should be ok to do acupuncture to relieve any aches or anxiety. My neck gets so sore after sleeping and has intermittent soreness/pain all day lately that I feel desperate to get some kind of treatment for relief. Do any of you have neck pains and what do you do with it for relief? I'm wondering if it really is just a pinched nerve of my cervical spine.. The more frequent occurrence of numbness is worrying me..like when I'm just sitting down a certain way or resting my arm this way or that.

    I've had more chances to "test" out when my double comes on. It is always there but very mild and more noticeable when I look at lighted sources. I notice that when I look at something at an angle, there is a definite double vision and more definitive. I will tell the ophthalmologist about this as well. (I looked her up on Yelp and she's gotten a lot of great reviews, lol).

    I also was able to get an appointment for August 16th for another general neuro at another hospital. I will keep both appointments (the one for Sept 6th because he is supposedly highly recommended by my GP). I will try to talk to my GP tomorrow and see if she will allow me to get an MRI for brain and neck though probably without contrast as I am still nursing and it isn't advised.

    I'v been eating a lot healthier and more active as well in the past few months. This is helping me manage my feelings of anxiousness. I know my kids deserve a less distracted and anxious mom as well, especially during the summer time.

    Hope all is doing well and apologies for my long replies! Feels crazy that last year, all was fine and suddenly this year, it all hit me in a matter of months.

     
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    Old 07-25-2016, 02:37 PM   #10
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    Re: Could this be MS?

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by mkdandy View Post
    I'm wondering if it really is just a pinched nerve of my cervical spine.. The more frequent occurrence of numbness is worrying me..like when I'm just sitting down a certain way or resting my arm this way or that.
    It's possible for certain positions to cause numbness in some people and can be common without any health issue. If a certain position causes numbness or tingling you simply need to change position. MS would not cause this type of numbness or tingling.

    Quote:
    My neck gets so sore after sleeping and has intermittent soreness/pain all day lately that I feel desperate to get some kind of treatment for relief.
    Sleeping wrong can cause a sore neck and it can take several days to even weeks to recover. Try to sleep in a different position or consider a new pillow.

    Stress and anxiety can cause neck pain, as can poor posture.

    MS has affected my cervical spinal cord from the beginning but I don't deal with neck pain except when I sleep wrong.

    Last edited by Snoopy61; 07-25-2016 at 02:38 PM.

     
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    Old 07-25-2016, 03:05 PM   #11
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    Re: Could this be MS?

    mkdandy,

    A change in diet can effect changes in your well being which helps you overall. Exercise has cognitive benefits because of the resulting proteins created as you exercise. Exercise also bathes you internally with healing secretions and hormones.

    Anxiety can cause neck pain and other conditions. Positional changes if they remove the pain would point away from MS more than towards MS. The tone of your update would indicate less anxiety from my reading of it. I would say that you are making positive progress. Hope you can get all the answers you need.

    As you do not yet have a definitive diagnosis, if you have MS, please keep your exercise in the area of low impact. If it is not MS, then you would not be so restricted. Low impact includes swimming, walking, yoga, tai chi, as well as modified pilates. If you are unsure, ask your doctor. Even with low impact exercise, stretch and hydrate and do the exercise in moderation.

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    Old 07-31-2016, 08:24 PM   #12
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    Re: Could this be MS?

    Hi all, once again thanks for chiming in. A lot of new findings since my last post. I did ended up going to an ND who really helped me, perhaps, pinpoint what's going on with me. In March, I had a rather eventful fall on my face, scraping my lips pretty badly even though I tried hard to catch myself from hitting the ground. I had hit mostly my right side. My vision problems started a few weeks afterwards and everything else as well...headache and eye pain on the right side. She thinks that I had a whiplash. The next day, I went in for a consultation with a chiropractor who specializes in upper cervical and she examined me and noted that my C2 vertebrae was out of alignment. She explained that the C2 is directly related to my optic nerves and can cause sinus issues as well as headaches and numbness/tingling in the arms. I also found this on the net in relation to C2:

    This vertebrae is also very important, and with it misaligned many people get conditions with sinus infections, hearing issues, and relates to the optic nerve for vision. Also very common issues with C1 and C2 vertebrae is balance and the vestibular system which misalignment can cause vertigo and dizziness.

    When I read this, I thought BINGO! Medical mystery solved! I have been suffering from ALL of the issues above in addition to the numbness/tingling. I did not have an adjustment as I've not yet had my MRI (this Wednesday) and was being cautious. So from two of these practitioners, a lot of my symptoms make sense. My chiro also explained the risk of neck adjustments with pre-existing conditions as well. She is a highly regarded chiro in my state.

    Right now, I am at the point of neck/back pain and vision issues that I almost cannot wait for my MRI and neurologist to have an adjustment, but am going to wait on the MRI. My question is, what if it is MS? Can I still get adjusted? I feel as if the longer I wait, the worse I get, especially if this is not MS, but more of an impinged or compressed nerve. My vision freaks me out even more than the pain.

    Thanks for any insights. You've all been so helpful and supportive.

    Last edited by mkdandy; 07-31-2016 at 08:31 PM.

     
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    Old 07-31-2016, 08:29 PM   #13
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    Re: Could this be MS?

    mkdandy,

    If it is MS, speak to your MS Specialist regarding their opinion and advice regarding adjustments. For my doctor, it is a no-no. I follow her advice and her opinion weighs heavily in my decision making process.

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    Old 08-01-2016, 11:42 AM   #14
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    Re: Could this be MS?

    I have a herniated disc at C2, which also gives me problems very seriously complicating what is MS and what is from the herniation...my MS specialist says no-no to chiro care as well. I would seek the advice of your doctor and go from there.
    Good luck!
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